Writing My Way Home



For my last small stone writing practice of January 2016, I would like to share a Kyirelle poem that I wrote at my writer’s group. A Kyirelle poem is structured so that all the lines have eight syllables and each stanza of four lines ends in a refrain. There are four stanzas. It takes on a rhythmical form very much like a rhyming couplet. I won’t go into its exact structure – let’s just say that it’s like finishing a puzzle in the form of a poem. Writing a Kyirelle poem was given as an optional prompt or writing exercise, and while I often ignore these, I jumped on it and finished it with a flourish. This poem almost wrote itself, and I was the scribe. Since its theme centers on this month’s blogging, I am sharing it here:


Writing My Way Home  – A Kyirelle

As a mindful writing practice,
I blog daily on that and this.
It is called sharing a small stone,
A spoonful of prose and a poem.

January lobs with a cold moon,
And winter scenes of snow monsoons.
My muse inspires an artful tone,
A spoonful of prose and a poem.

Tales of grit, grace and gratitude,
Shape its forum and latitude.
With tears of laughter, grief and groans,
A spoonful of prose and a poem.

Presence is my daily prayer.
Growth is awareness being here.
To this end I write my way home,
A spoonful of prose and a poem.

c   Andrea Grillo ~ 2016


Life Sketch

Writing prompt for our bimonthly writer’s group:

“My Life In Six Words” – without thinking – just my flash reaction:

Rock and roll inside a wallflower.

I am here to break rules.

A dame inside the nice girl.

I’m here so what the hell?

I just want to have fun.

Color me henna and cornflower blue.

I hate homework so there.  (Only five words so this does not count but feels good, so I’m leaving it in).

Urban head inside a farm girl.

A great fun exercise to explore where one is at in life at the present time especially without over thinking it.




I saw the 1991 movie Impromptu with Judy Davis playing George Sand and her tangled liaisons with so many lovers/paramours. Wow what a life! What a camaraderie of artists. What craziness. And yet… what did I miss out on? These are heady, creative, inspiring and yes sometimes egomaniacal and flawed characters. Why do I forgive them their excesses and drama? Hindsight? Romance? Brilliance? All of the above?

Anyway, I will now listen to more Chopin and Liszt, read a full bio of the rabble-rousing Sands and add her to my list of artist/heroines including Georgia O’Keeffe, Frida Kahlo and Camille Claudel. Why is it that romantic tragedy trumps happy-ever-after in an artful life – at least in the books and movies?


the tilt of her hat

the pout on her lips

the crossing of her legs

the film noir heroine

the seduction of art



A Blue Door

Ode to Diane’s Barn


I saw a blue door today.
It was painted shut on a
purple barn with touches of
pink and green on the roof.
Despite a graying azure sky,
this barn settles into comfort.
The surrounding meadow is
cheddar with a reflection of
sapphire and a hint of almond
floating around its foundation.
It stands thoughtfully alone.

The weathered barn looks so serene
in washes of toasty sun and quiet
shade with a committee of trees
tinting the background. I would like
to step inside its blue door to inhale
the sweet hay and linger in the leftover
heat at day’s end. That of a farm life
breathing in the slow decay of rusty
tools, rafters of swearing, laughter,
tears and prayer in the purple barn
with a pink and green roof.

Color and Light

I washed out some new nesting bowls in pastel colors and embossed textures. As they lay on the dish rack, I could not help but  arrange them according to a pleasing color palette and take a photo. Because that’s what I do. A chore and creative play. Interesting color and light on everyday objects will always interrupt my work and allow me to see simple stuff in a more stimulating, sometimes stunning and sometimes wondrous way.


kitchen crockery too pretty for pasta alone


Blizzard over.
Weekend over.
Full moon deflating.
Waves retreat.
New dunes hatch.
Binge shopping over.
Significant cooking
and baking on hold
’til the next storm.
Shoveling not quite over.
Sore muscles not quite over.
Snow melts into black ice.
Snow totals debated.
Sun squints through clouds.
Woodpeckers go back to work.
Memories record new memories.
Blizzard over.


Full Moon Blizzard!

Bring it on!!! As I sit in my warm house typing away yet to be disturbed by any power outages forcing off lights, water, heat and cell phone. I’ve sat through my share of routine-interrupting storm damage, so I’m not oblivious to its dark side – it’s just that storms change energy. And with the full moon – it’s the lusty wild female energy that awakens in all of us – male and female. It’s our passionate, chaotic creative selves that blows out and about howling free and fierce. YAY!!! I need this once in a blue moon. Once in every season. Once in awhile as a force of nature reminding me who I really am deep within and in relation to Earth and life itself. I made soup, I have candles, books, paper and pencils ready. Extra blankets are out of storage, tea is steeping and my dreamy poetic windy and excited self gets to come out and play. In mid storm I will be outside with arms wide up in the air, tongue out and feet off the ground.

nor’ easter moon wraps me under her white shawl



“You Are Loved”

Tucked into a sunny yellow pitcher-vase filled with fern, dainty caramel-colored roses, daisy-like chrysanthemums with lime green centers and wisps of goldenrod in bud came the simple note:

“You are loved”.

I am blessed for this and more friendship and family love, support  and humor than I can possibly describe. For me, in between all the wonderful pitchers of flowers, poems, painting, dishes and such come periods and visits with depression. I am a person who sees the glass more than half full – someone who is filled with wonder at the sighting of acorns and oaks, moss and lichen on winter-wood, early morning dew and waves on the beach, profanity, profundity and poetry – i.e. all of life. And yet, I too can slip into dark periods best explained as close to hiding in a damp shadowy cave. Depression is not a state of mind or mood swing. It’s a physical and painful emotional state when your vitality or life force is ripped away, and all hope and humor disappears. You lose control of an objective rational approach to problem solving, your literal and figurative appetite and plain living. Sylvia Plath’s bell jar decends and from under its glass your inner and outer vision are distorted. Thankfully my times of depression are not as severe as many others, and I now know that an end is surely in sight. Depression can visit unexpectedly as well as build slowly and steadily. It is fairly common, democratic and browbeats at varying degrees.

I share all of this now, because it goes along with sharing the sun-yellow roses, poetry and paintings. It is life as a tapestry – well worn yet more beloved for its wear and tear and frayed edges.

Wabi-Wabi revisited.

To all my friends and family from my youth through new arrivals on the horizon – thank you always for the flower bouquets coming from your hearts and your compassionate understanding.


under-painting with blue brush strokes a tender portrait




My Muse

Just one of those nights – nothing to write about and yet so much going on. I start and stop – move trial posts to the trash. My muse took off ahead of the storm. She left me alone with a note: “you have have plenty of food and busywork to amuse yourself. I’m off to rustle up some new ideas.” I believe she fancies herself a cross between an urban cowgirl and a geisha. She wears a paisley sarong with red cowgirl boots and a haiku saddlebag. Even though she skips out from time to time – it’s funny how well we get along.

Sigh. Some nights I wish that I could be satisfied with just a piece of chocolate.